Billy McGuigan and his brothers are Air Force brats; the kind that moved around to various installations and lived in Base Housing. When their Dad, a Tech Sergeant in the U.S. Air Force, was home from duty, he entertained the boys with his guitar – and his love of the Beatles.
“There was always music in our house. Whether it was background for dinner, up front for parties or required listening because of the release of a Beatles-related album, music was always the forefront of our family. I can remember my dad borrowing a friend’s Beatles chord book and meticulously copying it onto regular lined paper. I was in 2nd grade at the time, and I remember that I’d sit and watch him do this for hours. The end result was, of course, that we could sing the magic that was on the Beatles records. In fact, one of my first musical memories was of my dad teaching my brother Ryan and I (Matthew was an infant at the time) to sing the high harmony lines on “She’s Leaving Home.” There we were, Ryan, age 5 and I, age 8 singing these high parts terribly, while my dad did his best Paul impersonation… I can still remember the smile on his face! Little did he know he was planting the seeds of a career in music!”
What this upbringing did for Billy was instill a love of the songs that take him back to those days playing and singing with his Dad and brothers. Today those memories fuel Billy’s innate talent and desire to bring good times through music to others across the nation.
Producer and lead talent in three national hit shows, Billy developed the live request format for Yesterday and Today, complete with the requirement that all the band members memorize and be able to play on a second’s notice all 200+ songs in the Beatles anthology. “But it’s not your typical request show. Along with a request, we ask for the reason behind it and we chat a little with the person who made it, which makes the show interesting and interactive.” No wigs or accents here, the show incorporates a 1960s style set and modern day lighting scheme to create an extraordinary theatrical concert feel.
Buddy Holly seems to be the part written just for Billy McGuigan. He’s emulated the rock n’ roll pioneer in the role more than 1,500 times in his own stage show paying homage to the late Buddy Holly in Rave On! The Buddy Holly Experience, in addition to over 450 performances in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story across the country.
Rock Legends: People’s Choice is an expanded rock and roll revue show where audiences vote to hear their favorite songs from rock legends Elvis, Elton John, Billy Joel, The Doors, The Rolling Stones, Buddy Holly, Pink Floyd, and Sir Paul McCartney.
When he’s not on the road, Billy keeps it all rolling as CEO of Rave On Productions, acting in industrial films and commercials and doing voice-over work. He is actively involved in the Leukemia Lymphoma Society and balances all this with the real reason he’s doing it all – children Cartney and Ciaran and wife Rachelle.
Applause for Billy